Accident victims can suffer a wide variety of injuries ranging in severity. While some victims are lucky to walk away from the scene of an accident with little to no injuries, others are in serious and dire conditions that require immediate and continuous medical treatment. A traumatic brain injury is one of the most severe injuries a victim could suffer, and it is one of the most challenging injuries to recover from. Because it can take months and even years to improve a victim’s health and condition, the recovery process is likely to most difficult on TBI victims.
Doctors and researchers have conducted multiple types and forms of studies to better understand the impacts of brain injuries and what the road to recovery entails. For TBIs, those suffering from moderate to severe injuries are found to have sleep-wake cycles that are seriously disrupted, which include overlapping periods of sleep and wakefulness that can last several minutes. Researchers discovered that the recovery of this sleep-wake cycle is linked to the degree of recovery of the consciousness.
How can sleep patterns indicate the recovery of a TBI? It was believed that sleep and wakefulness problems were caused by the hospital environment and medications taken by TBI sufferers. However, a current study illustrates that neurological impairments and alterations to the levels of consciousness are the factors that best explain these problems associated with the sleep-wake cycle.
Because sleep is vital for the recovery of a TBI, researchers are discovering ways to improve the issues present with the sleep-wake cycle in brain injury patients. Sleep in necessary for the generation of new neurons and brain plasticity, which helps with the formation of new connections between neurons. Thus, doctors are taking steps to improve the sleep of brain injury patients in order to establish the proper environment for optimal recovery.
If you are a victim of a brain injury, it is important to understand your situation and what legal recourses are available to you. If a negligent party is liable for your injuries and losses, it is possible to hold them accountable through a personal injury suit. This legal actions could also help with the recovery of compensation, which could be used for medical bills, lost wages and damages.
Source: Technology.org, “The sleep of traumatic brain-injury patients,” Jan. 17, 2017